Air, Freight News

IATA calls for reinforcements in the battle with rogue battery shippers

[ June 21, 2022   //   ]

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is calling on governments help support the safe transport of lithium batteries.

It is calling on them to develop and implement global standards for screening, fire-testing, and information sharing to meet the challenge of the rapidly growing market which is  bringing many new shippers into air cargo supply chains. A critical risk concerns undeclared or mis-declared shipments, it says.

IATA also wants governments to step-up enforcement of safety regulation with stiffer penalties for rogue shippers and the criminalization of willful offenses.

It would like to see government develop specific standards and processes similar to those that exist for air cargo security, and that these are outcome based and globally harmonized.

IATA also wants to see a fire-testing standard that addresses lithium battery fire containment.

Safety data is critical to understanding and managing lithium battery risks effectively and without it, it will be difficult to understand the effectiveness of any measures.

These measures would support earlier initiatives by airlines and shippers such as the updates to the Dangerous Goods Regulations and the development of supplementary guidance material, the launch of a Dangerous Goods Occurrence Reporting Alert System and of a Safety Risk Management Framework.

IATA director general Willie Walsh said: “ The industry is raising the bar to consistently apply existing standards and share critical information on rogue shippers. But there are some areas where the leadership of governments is critical. Stronger enforcement of existing regulations and the criminalization of abuses will send a strong signal to rogue shippers. And the accelerated development of standards for screening, information exchange, and fire containment will give the industry even more effective tools to work with.”